The objective was to evaluate the intake, digestibility, milk yield and composition of cows fed mesquite pod meal (MPM). Five crossbred dairy cows, with an average body weight of 450 ± 5 kg and producing 10 ± 1 kg of milk/day were distributed in a 5 × 5 Latin square arrangement with five periods of 20 days each, comprised of 15 days for adaptation to the experimental diets (T1 = 0%, T2 = 1.5%, T3 = 3.0%, T4 = 4.5% and T5 = 6.0% MPM) and 5 days for data collection. Variables were assessed by analysis of variance and regression at P < 0.01 and P < 0.05 of significance, using the Student’s test. Animals were kept on pastures and the concentrates were provided at 6 kg/animal divided in two meals per day. The inclusion of 3.0% mesquite pod meal did not affect the intake, digestibility of nutrients and milk yield, but it changed milk composition. The dietary inclusion of 3.0% mesquite pod meal as a palatability enhancer increases the percentage of milk solids, lactose, fat and protein. Therefore, mesquite pod meal can be included in diets for dairy cows to improve the nutritive value of milk.
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Ethical standards and animal rights
All the procedures with animals were approved by the Animal Care and Use Committee of Bahia Southwest State University (Protocol CEUA - n° 02/2012).
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Aguiar, L.V., de Oliveira Silva, H.G., de Albuquerque Fernandes, S.A. et al. Mesquite pod meal as an additive increases milk total solids, lactose, fat and protein content in dairy cows. Trop Anim Health Prod 52, 1351–1356 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11250-019-02135-2